Monday, June 29, 2020

Happy Headlines

I read this post that my friend Lori Boss shared:

"Sometimes I just want it to stop. Talk of Covid, protest, looting brutality. I lose my way. Becoming convinced that this "new normal" is real life. But, then I met an 87 year old who talk of living through Polio, diphtheria, Vietnam, protest and yet is still enchanted with life. He seemed surprised when I said that 2020 must be especially challenging for him. "No," he said slowly looking me straight in the eyes, "I learned a long time ago to not see the world through printed headlines, I see the world through the people that surround me. I see the world with the realization we love big. Therefore, I choose to write my own headlines. "Husband loves wife today." "Family drops everything to come to Grandmas bedside." He patted my hand "Old man, makes new friend." 
His words collide with my worries, freeing them from the tether I had been holding tight. They float away. I am left with a renewed spirit. My headline now reads "women overwhelmed by the spirit of kindness and the reminder that our Capacity to love is never ending." 

Love that perspective as it seems like we wake up to a new sad headlines all the time. My headline today would read: “Brothers, best friends and playmates: good at making messes, endless laundry and other’s smile.”

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Luke Lately

Luke is THREE! He officially changed his name to “Luke Garner Three” he also informed me this week his new favorite color is Gold now, gold and red. 

He despises his stroller lately and baths, always wants to be outside and has become a little bossy. We are working on manners a lot and not whining and feeing like I need all the parenting tips as new big emotions are surfacing like fears and frustration when things don't go his way. He’s currently afraid of growing out of our house physically and pillows disappearing under the bed and toys down the bath drain. 

He loves art and his scribbles are transforming slowing into unique designs and objects and people which is fun to see slowly evolve. 

He loves spicy like his mama! We shared a tabasco infused popcorn together this past week and he will eat whole jalapeƱos.  Also, a big fan of ketchup and requested it with his oatmeal this week and I watched him squirt a little on every bite. 

A few favorite things about Luke:
  • His “Life is a Highway Kiss” he pulls ya in a really tight a pulls and big kiss on you
  • His prayers always include “grateful for mom” after every other sentence, averaging 3 times in every prayer
  • When he says "I love you too" randomly unprompted when playing together
  • Still loves to cuddle and such a mama's boy 
  • The way he goes down so easy always at 7pm and sleeps all night, especially with Clay now makes me extra grateful about this and he's such a deep sleeper
  • The way he always plays and includes Clays in everything
  • Cooking together is always way fun, adding sprinkles (seasonings) and telling me how the recipe goes 
  • Japanese prayers with dad, telling me to 'say my prayer in english'
  • When he makes up words and tells me "that’s how you say it in Japanese" 
  • The way he chases kids at the park, always looking for someone to race 
  • The way he squats when he plays, maybe it's totally normal, but seems so asian (see next four photos)   

The hydrangeas are in bloom, and make me so happy. 
I'm sorry Luke for making you pose with them and can’t wait to blackmail you one day :)

Sunday, June 21, 2020

Chronicles of Clay

 So funny story. . . after I vented in my last post with how miserable Clay has been he did a 360! He had such a good weekend! We wonder if it's related to being dairy-free now, or what?! He slept super well, took long naps, smiled a ton, and was just the happiest ever and I was feeling wayy more rested. I pulled out my camera to capture this rare occurrence and he was non-stop smiles soo picture overload! We are on day two of smiles, hope this happy baby streak continues.

The picture below reminds me of baby Riley <3 

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Sunshine List

I’m exhausted.
Truly, deeply, can’t be a normal-human-being tired. I feel like we’ve all been in a state of ‘survival mode’ for awhile, but the sleepless hours are compounding and struggle with Clay has been extra real this week. Feeling on the edge of burnout.

I took Clay to the doctor twice this week (once was unsuccessful left in tears bc of language barrier, and the other was across tokyo and better). I convinced myself he had to have something wrong/sick because he’s seriously so miserable all the time. Ive even gave up dairy in attempts to make him more happy.

He just cries for no reason alllll the time and impossible to sooth. We really struggle with feedings and feel engorged everyday but can’t get him to take bottle or anything either.

So at his appointment (with English speaker) he was seriously all smiles and wayy cute and the doctors and nurses were so obsessed with him and impressed at the milestones he’s reached at only four months (pushing up on arms, rolling, and can practically sit up on own now). They could find nothing wrong with him... so that’s good! Just have a very opinionated-healthy-growing-way-too-fast-grumpy boy.

So, now that I’ve vented full. . .  I wanted to focus on some blessings and things that have brought me joy during this time of struggle. Luke helped create some drawings for my ‘sunshine list’:

1. Honey Oat Bread- Such an easy bread recipe! We've been making this twice a week this month and even works in toaster oven. Fool proof! We modified with whole wheat, almond milk, and chia and flaxseed sprinkles!

2. The Happy Song
We discovered this song and it is SCIENTIFICALLY proven to make babies happy. We actually all really like it, and on repeat these days in our home.

3. Luke's donut shop- Luke's been pretty into his donut shop, creating decorations and cooking donuts for us, and even sleeping in it. Makes me smile.

4. Riley- I can't picture life without Riley, he does so much for your family and always has a 'big picture perspective' and helps me keep me sain. Excited to celebrate him this weekend for Father's Day. 

5. Zara- retail therapy works haha.... Zara had an online sale this week and was way excited for the deals and to got a couple items for me and the kids.

6. We get outside more and it feels good every time we do. 

7. Whoop Bands- we both got 'whoops' this past month and think they are the coolest little fitness and sleep tracker gadget. I'm impressed how accurate it seems and all the data it collects. 

8. Virtual Girl's Camp- this week also was our stake virtual girl's camp. I didn't join too many classes and devotions unfortunately. . .  but the last day I joined a great inspiring class about 'women in the scriptures' and ward testimony meeting and was able to share my testimony and felt strengthened in sharing and touched by the spirit and how blessed I am for the gospel. I created this logo weeks ago, but the words 'Hear Him on your journey' really hit me this week and was the message I needed. 

Saturday, June 6, 2020


Four months with Clay! Things got a little more eventful this past month with a trip to the ER and his first train ride. He had some unusual bleeding after circumcision filling four diapers full with him getting really pale, so we took him in. This kid still keeps us on our feet and makes sure we can't get too cozy. He is adamant is letting us know that he prefers to be held vs being anywhere else. He's getting a lot more active, rolling and being more entertained with objects and baby toys. As much of mamma's boy that Luke is, dad and Clay are developing good chemistry with dad always seeming to have the magic touch when getting him to sleep.

 It was pretty impossible to get a picture of them both together content this time around.

Turtle Tales

I spy a baby turtle! Luke found not one, but TWO baby turtles this past month while playing in ponds near our house. They were so cute and just wanted to take it home as a pet. Maybe we will next time. The weather in May is perfect and we've been exploring more and feels so good to be outside.

Luke also has gotten out of his 'shell' and making friends each time we venture to park.  Here is an experience I wrote down from earlier this past month:

This week I had an experience with Luke. It was a hot day and we ventured to our neighbor park with our dinky daiso squirtguns to spray things. There was some few older kids, maybe 5 and 7 year olds having a little water fight with massive squirt guns, including one impressive backpack one that wrapped around his back full of water. 

I watched my Luke smile and watch them for a second and I longed for him to have some friends to play with. Then I watched him with his little daiso squirt gun go up to the biggest kid there and squirt him. 

The older kid smiled and they all all continued the water fight but including Luke and gave him a larger squirt gun to play with, despite the age difference and race and language they all played together for the next half hour laughing and getting soaked. 

It made me proud of a Luke to have courage, to walk over and squirt the big kid and made me admire the older boy who choose not to ignore or overlook Luke and his pathetic squirtgun. But instead took and showed him the tactics of water fights and let him use his gun. 

I know if a three year old can find moments to show courage and stand up then we all can and how rewarding it can be.